Distance to all Toronto attractions

Making Waves Boatel is located in the heart of downtown Toronto with easy walking, biking or streetcar access to all the Toronto Attractions and airports/train stations. We have prepared a distance chart for you for distances to assist in planning … Continue reading

FPB 78-1 Cochise: How The Window Film Is Working

We have finally installed sun-blocking window film on FPB 78-1 Cochise, and the results are excellent. Cochise was launched without …Read More

St. Augustine, FL

“The first this, the oldest that” begins Lonely Planet’s description of St. Augustine. The town the Spanish founded in 1565 retains dozens of historical buildings ranging as far back as the Spanish era and now is a popular tourist destination. We spent two night anchored off town, enjoying the sights from the water and ashore….

Tres Amigos Reunion

It doesn’t really matter where these best buddies meet, in the Bahamas, at Palm Beach, or on the moon. They always have a good time. Gracie’s mom, Marilyn, emailed Dylan and Dee Dee some pics from their reunion two weeks ago on Carolina. The kids wante…

23 March 2017 Little Rock, AR – Memphis, TN

     The Clintons may have put Little Rock on the map, but this charming and historic capital city offers plenty of reasons to keep it there. The Central High Museum tells the painful, powerful story of the city’s racial struggles. For those who love to shop, hours can be spent at the River Market wherein lies a collection of tasty eateries and eclectic stores.
     Arkansas’s capitol city provided us with a lovely visit and our RV park was right on the AR river making all of our destinations very accessible by bike, public transportation, or on foot. We were close enough to the river bank to throw a rock and hit it. There were bass tournaments, barge traffic, and practicing rowing teams for our entertainment. There is a pedestrian bridge beside the park that once was a train trestle lift bridge. The evolution to a pedestrian bridge was quite cleaver and beautified by planters filled with blooming annuals. We made many trips across that bridge both on foot and on our bikes. 
     The pedestrian bridge ends/begins at the Clinton Library and Museum. Our docent kept us thoroughly entertained for 90 minutes. We weren’t ready for her to go home. She’s a retired history professor from the University of Arkansas and was a colorful delight. She was cute, spunky, and full of interesting AR history.

                               The Clinton Presidential Library

     Next door is the Heifer International Museum. We didn’t know a thing about it and only heard about it last week from boating/RV-ing friends who have volunteered with the organization for several summers. Their mission is to work with communities to end world hunger and poverty and to care for the earth. 

     A farmer from the midwest, Dan West, went to the front lines of the Spanish Civil War as an aid worker. His mission was to provide relief but he soon discovered the meager single cup of milk rationed to the weary refugees once a day, wasn’t sufficient. He had a brain storm—“What if they had not a cup but a cow?”  That “teach a man to fish” philosophy is what inspired Mr. West to found Heifer International and now, 70 years later, that philosophy still inspires their work to end world hunger and poverty throughout the world once and for all.

     Families are empowered to turn hunger and poverty into hope and prosperity by linking communities and helping bring sustainable agriculture and commerce to areas with a long history of poverty. Their animals provide the families with both food and a reliable income from products such as milk, eggs, and honey that can be traded or sold at market.

     The core of their model is Passing on the Gift which means that families share the training they received and pass on the first female offspring of their livestock to another family. This extends the impact of the original gift allowing a once impoverished family to become donors and full participants in improving their communities and achieving self-reliance. This is definitely a “must see” when you visit Little Rock.

     The River Trail is paved and perfect for cyclists, skaters, and walkers. It runs 28 miles along the river and was fairly flat which was a great relief after those AZ and NM hills. Needless to say, we throughly enjoyed our visit there.

     Now we’ve moved farther east on I-40 and are parked on the banks of the Mississippi River in Memphis.

Till later—
Bill and Laura

FPB 78: Nordhavn Owners Take a Ride and Report

James and Jennifer Hamilton, who have circumnavigated in their Nordhavn 52 Dirona, recently took a ride aboard Cochise and wrote a fascinating report …Read More


Envoy is in Lefkas Marina for the northern hemisphere winter while we’re home for the New Zealand summer, returning next month.

It’s early February, nearly three months since we left Envoy and after such a break from boating we’re ready for some more, happily accepting an invitation to join long-time friends Morris and Gail Watson for a few days aboard “Moritz”, a Maritimo 48 motor yacht in Auckland’s superb Hauraki Gulf.

Maritimos are upper end of the market planing motor yachts built in Queensland’s Gold Coast. 
The company’s owner, Bill Barry-Cotter, is well experienced in the marine industry and formerly owned Riviera – also builders of popular planing motor yachts. We presume the name is inspired by Maritimo Island, one of the Egadi Islands located off the north-west coast of Sicily where coincidentally we visited in 2014.

Moritz is a big volume luxury boat

We meet Morris and Gail at Half Moon Bay Marina and quickly settle on Moritz – not only have we been aboard previously but Morris and Gail have cruised aboard Envoy with us in the Aegean Sea. In fact they’re also meeting us this year for a week in Sicily.

Being a weekday there are no other boats around and the sun is shining with little wind as we cruise sedately down the Tamaki River sipping a cold welcome-aboard beer.

Moritz is a luxuriously appointed big-volume boat with three staterooms, two having en-suite heads and bathrooms. The saloon has plenty of seating and a generous sized dining area while access to the huge flying bridge area is by an easily manageable staircase rather than the glorified ladder that many boats have.

The staircase to Moritz’s flybridge is way better than the ladder we had on our last boat

Full walk-around decks give great access for crew duties, while a huge cockpit and boarding platform give ample space for outdoor entertaining and fishing. Previously I’ve been one of about 18 people aboard Moritz for a day’s fishing without the boat feeling over-crowded.

Apparently there’s a trend away from flybridge vessels to sedan style, but I honestly find this difficult to understand unless a buyer is really particular about a sportier appearance or has an issue with air draft. Flybridges work really well on larger boats providing much greater usable space and storage space for the same length, vastly improved unobstructed visibility and reduced engine noise at the helm. Advocates of the sedan style say it’s nice to have all the crew in the same space, but I believe it’s a much greater plus to have an additional and separate area of space. Another factor is that when seas are a bit rough, it’s less claustrophobic and all looks a bit better looking down on the waves from on high.

Moritz’s flybridge is perfect with full headroom, just the single helm position (in my opinion additional helm stations below add unnecessary expense and take a lot of space), glass windows (vinyl clears have restricted visibility in rough conditions and don’t stay pristine for more than a couple of seasons), plenty of comfortable seating, a small fresh water sink and refrigerator, and easy staircase access.

With a flybridge like this who’d want a sedan style cruiser?

Some critics of flybridges also cite their additional windage, but in fact windage is generally not a problem applicable to boats (it has negligible effect compared to the drag caused by water) except perhaps for some inexperienced skippers encountering high beam winds in marinas and let’s face it – most boats like this have twin engines and bow thrusters making maneuverability a breeze. Moritz even has stern thrusters! Incidentally for the technically minded hull drag caused by water increases at a phenomenal square of the increase in speed.

I do agree that flybridges don’t work so well on smaller vessels (less than about 40ft) as their seating and headroom is too low, access is more difficult and vessel stability can be impaired by a higher centre of gravity.

This trip is also interesting to us for another reason. We’re starting to think about what sort of boat we may buy back in Auckland when our Med adventures aboard Envoy are completed and so far all motor vessel options are on the table including conventional shaft-driven planing boats.
Moritz’s twin 670hp Cummins diesel engines purr away driving their shafts with minimal vibration as we clear the channel and increase rpm slightly to 930 giving a still-sedate speed of 9.2 knots and fuel consumption of 4 litres/hour for each engine.
We’re in no hurry and like many owners of fast planing boats Morris sees no benefit in going very much above displacement speed and then getting a bumpier ride and greatly increased fuel consumption. Later we’re cruising at 1090 rpm providing 10 knots and 18 litres/hour.

First stop is Motutapu Island’s Station Bay which is perfectly calm with only three other boats swinging at anchor. For me it makes an enjoyable change to be crew rather than skipper and not have tough decisions like deciding where to drop the anchor and how much chain to deploy. Morris and Gail are long time cruisers, originally aboard sailing yachts and we have the utmost confidence in them.

Leaving Motutapu Island’s Station Bay

Planing boats tend to have a different sound at night compared with their displacement cousins as wind-driven wavelets hit their planing strakes and make a little bit of noise, but we’re used to this from our former days of owning planing boats so it’s no problem.

Next Blog we cruise to Waiheke Island and the Coromandel Peninsula.

FPB 78-1 Solar Energy Update

FPB 78-1 Cochise has been anchored to the dock in Fort Lauderdale the past five days; we have yet to …Read More

To follow the progress of Daybreak

http://snap.ocens.comType karenfisher in the name boxchange start date to March 1 2017click the bottom box view map

Traveling to The South Pacific

Life long dream of a  journey to French Polynesia is finally a reality! 13 days from Barra De Navidad Mexico to Nuku Hiva on Daybreak Nordhavn 60 with Jerome Fisher, Don Weippert and Francisco. Bill is having the time of his life. Thank you Jerome…